News & Announcements
EnVision 2013 Church Growth Workshop
Friday, October 25 thru Sunday, October 27
You have heard me speak publicly about a church growth seminar that several of us attended last November called EnVision 2012. This was a church growth workshop hosted by the Lynn Street congregation in Parkersburg. The worship services we attended were so uplifting and encouraging. The classes we attended were very informative and inspired a lot of deep thinking.
I encourage you to attend EnVision 2013. This year's workshop is being hosted by the Bclpre Church of Christ and is coordinated by Joe Spivy. If you have any questions about EnVision, you may email Joe at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As Joe said in a recent email, "This year's sessions will address several concerns associated with family, individual, and congregational health.
This year's session topics:
|Family Life Ministry||Special Needs Education|
|Senior Adults Ministry||Grief Recovery|
|Worship Ministry||Same Sex Attraction|
|Addiction and Recovery||Conflict Resolution|
There will also be a "Youth Track" just for teens and childcare will be provided.
I encourage you to plan on attending. It will not be a waste of your time, rather it will prove to be spiritually beneficial to you and your family.
Worship in the Woods
On October 13th, the family will be having Worship in the Woods. The Ohio Valley University Group will be visiting with us. Let's all pray for good weather and enjoy a great worship and meal with family, friends and God. Bring a covered dish. Hot dogs and drinks will be provided. We appreciate the deacons setting up the P.A. system, mowing , organizing the food and having chairs and tables over to the shelter. In case of rain, we will meet in the main auditorium.
Thank You Guest Speakers
We want to thank Teddy Tackett, Seth Miller and Buddy Lawrenson for the great lessons they have presented this month. May God continue to use them in a powerful way.
A special thank you to Karen and Barb for a delicious breakfast for the bus workers. The children enjoyed their August Birthday Party and thanks to Dawn and Sue the kids received cake and gifts.
The Puppet Ministry, Bible Hour monitors, and Teacher, Duane Landefeld are to be commended for keeping children’s worship on Sundays a great experience for God's little precious souls.
The fair is over and we want to thank those who worked the booth. We welcome any suggestions for next year’s county fair.
Great Race Winner
Congratulations to Garry English, Brian Rose, Carla Rose and Keith Jones for winning the Great Race for the month of August. Great job Green Bus riders.
Satan called a worldwide convention. In his opening address to his evil angels, he said, "We can’t keep the Christians from going to church, we can’t keep them from reading their Bibles and knowing the truth. We can’t even keep them from forming an intimate, abiding relationship experience with Christ. If they gain that connection with Jesus, our power over them is broken.
"So let them go to church, let them have their conservative lifestyle; but steal their time, so they can’t gain that relationship with Jesus Christ. This is what I want you to do, my angels. Distance them from gaining hold of their Savior and maintaining that vital connection throughout their day!"
How shall we do this?"‘ shouted his angels. "Keep them busy in the non-essentials of life and invent innumerable schemes to occupy their minds," he answered. "Tempt them to spend, spend, and borrow, borrow, borrow. Persuade the wives to go to work for long hours and the husband to work 6 and 7 days a week, 10 and 12 hours a day, so they can afford their empty lifestyle.
“Keep them from spending time with their children. As their family fragments, soon their home will offer no escape from the pressures of work!" Over-stimulate their minds so that they cannot hear that still., small voice. Entice them to play the radio or cassette player whenever they drive; to keep the TV, VCR. CDs, and their PC going constantly in their homes. And see to it that every store and S restaurant in the world plays non—Biblical music constantly. This will jam their minds and break that union with Christ.
"Fill the coffee table with magazines and newspapers. Pound their minds with the news 24 hours a day. invade their driving moment with billboards. Flood their mailboxes with junk mail, mail order catalogs, sweepstakes, and every kid of newsletter and promotional offerings of free products, services, and false hopes. Keep skinny, beautiful models on the magazines so the husbands will believe that external beauty IS what’s important, and they’ll become dissatisfied with their wives. Ha! That will fragment those families quickly! Even in their recreation, let them be excessive. Have them return from their recreation exhausted, disquieted, and unprepared for the coming week. Don’t let them go out in nature to reflect on God's wonders. Send them to amusement parks, sporting events, concerts and movies instead. Keep them busy, busy,_ busy! And when they meet for spiritual fellowship, involve them in gossip and small talk so that they leave with troubled consciences and unsettled emotion. Go ahead, let them be involved in soul-winning. But crowd their lives with so many good causes V they have no time to seek power from Christ. ’ Soon they will be working in their own strength, sacrificing their health and family for the good of the cause. It will work! It will work!"
It was quite a convention. And the evil angels went eagerly to their assignments causing Christians everywhere to get busy, busy, busy and to rush here and there.
I guess the question is, "Has the devil been successful at his scheme, at his goal?" You be the judge!
via Whitwell, TN
Honor Bus and Great Race Winners - July
Congratulations to the Green Bus for winning the Honor Bus award for July 2013 and congratulations to the Blue Bus for winning the Great Race award for July. We appreciate the volunteers on these Bible School on wheels and we thank the breakfast cooks for their kindness and sacrifice. The birthday cakes were delicious and again we appreciate those who help bake, serve and clean up. The puppeteers, monitors and teachers in Bible Hour all help the Ministry pull together. Thank all of you who help bring the people in to hear the Word of God. We pray that souls will be sought, brought and taught to bring Glory to Gods name.
A Forgiving Spirit
There is no more important characteristic found in the human heart than forgiveness. It's importance is seen inthe home, church, community and nation. Someone has said there are "three kindred spirits in the heart --giving, thanksgiving and forgiving. Usually where one is found, all are found." A forgiving heart is an essential quality every child of God should have (Ephesians 4:32).
Reasons To Be Forgiving
God commands it (Mark 11:25). This should be sufficient reason for any right-thinking person to be forgiving because God's promises rest upon obedience to His word. But forgiveness on mere obedience to command usually falls short of what it should be. Anything done out of a sense of duty or necessity as usually not from the heart (cf. 2 Corinthians. 9:5-7). Consider the parent who makes the child say "l‘m sorry“ when, in reality, he is not sorry at : all. He says it but only to appease his parent.
The example of Jesus (1 Peter. 2:21; Philippians. 2:3-5; Luke 23:34). As our example in all things, He would not require of us that which He would not do Himself. Even when His life was taken from Him, He had a forgiving attitude. It is said of Him, "He gave all, then forgave."
We have been forgiven. God, in Christ, has forgiven the sins of the Christian (Ephesians 4:32). As Christ has forgiven him, he is to forgive others (Colossians. 3:13). One who is unwilling to forgive after he has been forgiven is viewed disdainfully by the God of heaven (Matthew 18:21-35).
In order to have future forgiveness (Matthew 6:14-15).
What It Means To Forgive
Forgiveness is more than just speaking the words. It must be sincere and from the heart. It must be patterned after the forgiveness God has granted to us. It must be accompanied by actions which befit true forgiveness.
Forgiveness involves a kind attitude — abandoning all animosity and hatred. All bitterness, anger, wrath. clamor and evil speaking should be put away (Ephesians 4:31). We can hold no grudges. One must deny the impulse to get even and seek to do the forgiven one good.
Forgiveness involves forgetting (Hebrews 8:12), but what does it mean to forget? It is impossible for a person to completely obliterate the wrong from his mind. Rather it means to not hold the person accountable for it anymore. When forgiveness is granted that should end the matter. It should never again be dredged up or held against the one who has been forgiven.
Forgiveness should be given by the "golden rule" (Matthew 7:12).
One should always be willing to forgive - even at repeated offenses, Matthew 18:21-22 has the apostle Peter asking, "Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? Up to seven times? Jesus said to him, 'I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven."
Jesus was willing to forgive those who crucified Him, but they were not forgiven until they acknowledged their wrong and repented of it (Luke 23:34; Acts 2:36-39). When one refuses to repent, he is to be regarded as a “heathen and a tax collector to you" (Matthew 18:15-17).
by: Gene Taylor
Our Precious Young People
According to research done within our brotherhood, 45 percent of our teens eventually leave the churches of Christ. This is a horrible drain, and it means that we are doing something wrong. A directive put out by Abilene Christian University stated that our youth ministry programs have emphasized entertainment and have had "little or no theological grounding? The article suggested that "If teenagers regularly engage in prayer, meditation on Scripture, confession, praise, and weeping over the lost — you can be much more sure that Christ is making a difference in their lives. “Among the other positive factors they listed were "parents spiritual commitment, good family communication and church attendance" Surprisingly, in the survey, one of the negatives was the family’s income. The greater the family’s affluence, the less willing a teenager is to rely on Jesus Christ. The bare fact of the matter, however, is that whatever the cause, we are losing enormous numbers of our young people.
Parents, let me speak to you. What can you do? May I be so bold as to suggest that you reevaluate your own goals in life. If your goal is affluence,” you are likely working against the spiritual well-being of your young people. They can see this, and nothing you say, or command, or require of your young people is going to change the picture substantially. On the other side of the coin, if your goal is spirituality, and if your young people can see real spiritual commitment in your lives, constant family communication about church, and a kind of attendance pattern which says that the church is the number one priority of your lives, the chances of their being faithful will increase. When I noticed that we are losing 45 percent of our young people, I looked at our attendance figures and noticed that 42 percent of our people do not attend Sunday evening services. Do you suppose there might be some connection?
Bulletin Digest, by Mike Schroeder